I think night photography is so compelling because a camera can sift through darkness to illuminate beautiful things we wouldn't be able to see with our own weak human eyes. And, in the case of these awesome long-exposure photographs of Caltrain tracks taken by local photographer/Twitter guy Aaron Durand, the camera can find great swaths of temporary light and make them last forever (and also make railways look like the warp speed space trail of the Starship Enterprise).
Aaron learned how to use a camera by taking shots of walls full of graffiti with a group of local photographers. But, he explains, "walls don't move," and Aaron was interested in capturing motion. Since much of the graffiti Aaron was photographing was located near railways, creating images of the trains (well, their lights, anyway) was a natural next step.
Now, Aaron and his photographer cohort Nick Fisher lurk near San Francisco Caltrain railways, waiting for the blazing lights to pass.
While Aaron shoots both digital and film, he's more into film these days. The square images you see here were taken with a German medium-format camera, the Pentacon Six.
Now this is crazy. To get this shot from under the train, Aaron and Nick disassembled a tripod, nailed some of its parts directly to the tracks, mounted the camera on the makeshift tripod, and prayed the train wouldn't smash up the lens – and everything else. It worked, and they got this amazing shot.
I'm ending with my favorite. I love lasers. Hey, no one go photoshopping a cat into that tunnel. Check out more of Aaron's SF trains on his Flickr page.